Berkeley Astronomy 7A: Readings from Ryden & Peterson
For readings from Carroll & Ostlie (big orange book), go
The following are readings from Ryden & Peterson (= RP = small blue
By Tuesday 8/28, please read:
By Thursday 8/30 (PS 1 due), please read:
- RP: Chapter 1: Skim pages 1-15, but be sure to understand the terms celestial sphere; altitude; azimuth; right ascension; declination; ecliptic; "equinox 2000.0". Understand Figures 1.6 and 1.8. Chapter 2: Read pages 29-33.
By Tuesday 9/4, please read:
- RP: Chapter 2: pages 37-38. Understand parallax. Understand Figure 2.5. Also Section 19.3: pages 444-448. Understand Doppler shift, radial velocity, proper motion, space velocity.
By Thursday 9/6 (PS 2 due), please read:
- RP: Chapter 13: pages 307-318. Understand luminosity, flux, apparent magnitude, absolute magnitude, bolometric (adjective), bandwidth, differential flux (a.k.a. flux density), atmospheric extinction, interstellar extinction. Understand Figures 13.1, 13.2. Do not worry about equations 13.27-13.40 as we will have no use for them.
By Tuesday 9/11, please read:
- RP: Chapter 5: Starting from equation 5.86 (do not worry about the derivation) on page 139, read pages 140-143. Understand the Rayleigh-Jeans limit of the Planck function; the Wien limit of the Planck function; equation 5.96 for the flux at the surface of a blackbody; equation 5.98 for the bolometric luminosity of a spherical blackbody. Understand the difference between a spectrum measured per unit wavelength and a spectrum measured per unit frequency. NOTE: RP uses I_nu for the Planck function, whereas in lecture we will use B_nu for the Planck function. In lecture we reserve the variable I_nu for a generic specific intensity not necessarily that of a blackbody.
By Thursday 9/13 (PS 3 due), please read:
- RP: Chapter 5: pages 111-118. Also Section 5.4 on page 127-130. Understand everything.
By Tuesday 9/18, please read:
- RP: Chapter 5: Sections 5.2 and 5.3 from pages 118-127. Do not worry about the equations from 5.27 onward; we will deal with them in other contexts later. Understand photoexcitation, photoionization, collisional ionization, recombination, Kirchoff's laws. Understand qualitatively the various ways that line transitions can be broadened.
By Thursday 9/20 (PS 4 due), please read:
- RP: Chapter 6: pages 146-159. Understand focal length, focal plane, plate scale, Airy disk, prime focus, point spread function, "seeing."
By Tuesday 9/25, please read:
- RP: Chapter 6: Section 6.4 pages 159-161. Understand quantum efficiency, CCD, spectrograph, interferometry, grazing incidence mirrors, adaptive optics. Also Sections 6.6-6.7, pages 165-170. Understand Figure 6.17.
By Thursday 9/27 (PS 5 due), please read:
- RP: Section 2.5 on Kepler's Laws pages 50-52. Also Chapter 3: pages 61-72. Understand central force, equation 3.42, aphelion distance formula (more generally "apoapse"), perihelion distance formula ("periapse").
By Tuesday 10/2, please catch up on all your reading.
Thursday 10/4: Midterm #1 in class.
By Tuesday 10/9, please read:
- RP: Finish Chapter 3: pages 72-80. Note that equation 3.60 is a valid expression for the orbital energy but there is a simpler form that we will derive in class. Understand how to use the virial theorem (equation 3.87).
By Thursday 10/11 (PS 6 due), please read:
- RP: All of Section 13.5. Also Section 12.3 but only pages 296--302. Understand Figures 12.5 and 12.6. Understand visual binary, spectroscopic binary (single-lined versus double-lined), eclipsing binary. Pay attention to what is actually being measured in each case.
By Tuesday 10/16, please read:
- RP: All of Section 5.6. We will treat the Boltzmann equation, the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution, and the Saha equation in much greater detail in lecture.
By Thursday 10/18 (PS 7 due), please read:
- RP: All of Section 14.2, and review Figure 5.13. Understand in Figure 5.13 why the number density of neutral H in the n=2 state is maximum for T = 10000 K. Also pages 213--217 on hydrostatic equilibrium. Understand mean molecular mass (a.k.a. mean molecular weight) and scale height.
By Tuesday 10/23, please read:
- RP: All of Sections 14.1 (review of hydrostatic equilibrium and mean molecular weight) and 14.3 (review of optical depth and opacity). Understand X, Y, Z, metals, opacity.
By Thursday 10/25 (PS 8 due), please read:
- RP: Section 14.4 on Hertzprung-Russell diagram (absolute magnitude is one-to-one with luminosity, and spectral type is one-to-one with temperature). Section 15.1 but only through the notion of radiation pressure in equation 15.13. Understand how to estimate the central pressure and central temperature of the Sun.
By Tuesday 10/30, please read:
- RP: All of Section 15.2. Understand Kelvin-Helmholtz contraction luminosity.
By Thursday 11/1 (PS 9 due), please read:
- RP: All of Section 15.3 but skip or skim equation 15.61--15.69. Understand pp chain, quantum mechanical tunneling. Also pages 371--373. Understand random walk (a.k.a. diffusion) and equation 15.90.
By Tuesday 11/6, please read:
- RP: Section 15.1.2. Understand energy transport by radiative diffusion. Understand equations 15.21, 15.23, and 15.32.
Thursday 11/8: Midterm #2 in class.
By Tuesday 11/13, please read:
- RP: Section 15.1.3 on convective energy transport. Understand adiabatic temperature gradient.
- RP: Sections 17.1 and 17.2 on star formation and evolution.
By Thursday 11/15 (PS 10 due), please read:
- Handout from Chapter 8 of Shu's textbook, "The Physical Universe": Pages 144 to 147 only. You are strongly advised to solve Problem 8.1 on page 146.
By Tuesday 11/20, please read:
- The following website from Nick Strobel: Lives and Deaths of Stars. Keep advancing to the "Next Section" until you hit the "Sections Review" page.
By Tuesday 11/27, please read:
- RP: Chapter 18 up to and including all of Section 18.1 on white dwarfs. Pay special attention to their Equation 18.15 (theory) and Equation 18.17 (observation). Make sure you understand how to derive Equation 18.15.
- More from Nick Strobel's website, starting from Stellar Remnants. Keep advancing to the "Next Section" until you hit the "Sections Review" page.
By Thursday 11/29 (PS 11 due), please read:
- RP: Sections 18.2 through 18.3 on neutron stars and black holes.
- RP: Section 18.4 on novae and supernovae. Congratulations! You have finished all the readings of Astro 7A and should be ready to go supernova with all the knowledge you have gained this semester!
Last modified: Tue Aug 21 15:02:03 PDT 2012